The Simla Conference of 1945 was a meeting between the Viceroy of India Lord Wavell and the major political leaders of British India at Viceregal Lodge in Simla. Convened to agree on and approve the Wavell Plan for Indian self-government, and there it reached a potential agreement for the self-rule of India that provided separate representation for Muslims and reduced majority powers for both communities in their majority regions.
Talks, however, stalled on the issue of selection of Muslim representatives. Seeking to assert itself and its claim to be the sole representative of Indian Muslims, the All-India Muslim League refused to back any plan in which the Indian National Congress, the dominant party in the talks, appointed Muslim representatives. [ citation needed ]This scuttled the conference, and perhaps the last viable opportunity for a united, independent India. When the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League reconvened under the Cabinet Mission the next year, the Indian National Congress was far less sympathetic to the Muslim League's requests despite Jinnah's approval of the British plan.
On 14 June 1945 Lord Wavell announced a plan for a new Executive Council in which all members except the Viceroy and the Commander in Chief would be Indians. This executive council was to be a temporary measure until a new permanent constitution could be agreed upon and come into force. All portfolios except Defense would be held by Indian members.
Prime Minister Winston Churchill as head of the war cabinet proposed Field Marshal Wavell's name to his cabinet in mid-June 1943, as India's next viceroy. General Sir Claude Auchinleck who had followed Wavell in his middle eastern command was to be the next commander in chief of Indian army after Lord Wavell. In October 1943 the British Government decided to replace Lord Linlithgow with Lord Wavell as the Viceroy of India. Before assuming the vice royalty, Lord Wavell had been head of the Indian army and thus had an understanding of the Indian situation. On becoming Viceroy, Wavell’s most important task was to present a formula for the future government of India which would be acceptable to both the Indian National Congress and the All-India Muslim League.
Gandhi launched the Quit India Movement in August 1942, after which he was arrested with other Congress lieutenants like Nehru and Patel. He was kept separate in Agha Khan's Pune palace while others were kept in Ahmednagar Fort.[ circular reference ] Now he decided to launch his '' Satyagraha '', he commenced after the early morning breakfast on 10 February 1943 a fast for 21 days. Weighing 109 pounds when he started fast lost eighteen pounds after his 21-day ordeal. Fearing the death of Gandhi in prison as before him Kasturba his wife and Mahadev Desai his private secretary were died in the same prison in Pune Palace, Lord Linlithgow recommended Churchill immediate unconditional release of Gandhi. Churchill wrote back to Linlithgow, "it seems almost certain that the old rascal [Gandhi] will emerge all better for his so-called fast.'' Gandhi broke his fast on 3 March 1943. Gandhi suffered from malaria, and after that his health was seriously deteriorated. New Viceroy Archibald Wavell, recommended his unconditional release, Leo Amery the secretary of state for India convinced Churchill to release Gandhi on medical grounds, so he was released. Instead of dying Gandhi showed remarkable resilience and recovered. It was quite funny when Churchill sent Wavell a peevish telegram asking ''why Gandhi has not died yet?'' Communal problem was the greatest problem for any political advance in India, so Wavell also began to agree with Amery's conviction that until "Aged Trinity" (Gandhi, Churchill and Jinnah) is in lead there is a little chance of any political advance. Lord Wavell had a plan in his mind and was eager to invite key leaders to a summit, but he was waiting for something to come out of Gandhi-Jinnah meetings rescheduled on 9 September. C. Rajagopalachari has presented a formula before that meeting that was accepting the Muslim right for a separate homeland. Talks started on 9 September 1944 in Mallabar Hill house of Jinnah, both leaders spent three and half hours of secret discussion but Gandhi later with C. R. called it a "test of my patience and nothing and I am amazed at my own patience." Their second meeting proved no more fruitful than first one, Jinnah sensed by this time the futility of talks. Then there was a session of written correspondence on 11, 12, 13 and 14 September, and on 24, 25 and 26 September 1944, but nothing came out of it. Gandhi by now believed that "Jinnah was a good person but he suffers hallucination when he imagines about unnatural division of India and creation of Pakistan". Wavell wired to Amery, "Gandhi wants independence first and then willing to resolve communal problem as he is profoundly a Hindu and wants transfer of full Power to some nebulous national", While Jinnah wants to settle down communal problem first and then wants independence as he has lost his trust in Congress and Hindus." Wavell also viewed this mini-summit breakdown a personal challenge to bring together two parties. He has many creative ideas, and was willing to use his influence and power to settle the communal deadlock. He would try to bring some moderate Indian leaders on a settlement by calling them to Shimla (India's summer capital). His list included as he told to Amery, "Gandhi and one "other" of Congress party, Jinnah and one other member of Muslim League, Dr. Ambedkar to represent "Depress classes", Tara Singh to represent Sikhs, M. N. Roy for labor representation, and some other to represent Non-Congress and Non-League Hindus and Muslims. After correspondence with Amery in October, now Wavell decided to write Churchill directly and he tried to convince Churchill in this regard though he was sure that Churchill was reluctant for any summit as "he hated India and anything to do with it". Churchill informed Amery the possibility to see Wavell not before March 1945, Wavell on his own behalf met with Jinnah on 6 December, and tried to convince him to live in United India as this will be much more beneficial for all as it will represent a strong nation on international level. Jinnah argued that "Indian unity was only a British creation". Benghal's governor Richard Casey was well informed about Congress-League relation that he wrote to Wavell, "Congress is basically responsible for the growth of Pakistan idea, by the way they treated the Muslims especially by refusing them into coalition provincial governments." Wavell agreed with everything Casey said about Pakistan, writing in his reply "I do not believe that Pakistan will work". Churchill chaired his war cabinet that reviewed and rejected Wavell's proposal for constitutional reforms in India on December 18. But Wavell was invited to visit England, and met with Churchill and Cabinet in May 1945. Wavell was allowed to fly back to India in June 1945 to release Congress Working Committee member and start talks that was later called Shimla Conference. Wavell decided to call all key leaders of India in Shimla on 25 June 1945 and broadcast a message to all Indians on 14 June 1945 showing British willingness to give India dominion status as soon as possible if the communal deadlock is broken down. "India needs a surgical operation", Nehru noted after considering Wavell's idea, "We have to get rid of our preoccupation with petty problem" as he considered communal problem a petty problem. Jinnah accepted the invitation but if he could meet with Wavell alone first on 24 June.
One day before the conference was convened on 24 June, Wavell met with Azad, Gandhi and Jinnah to assess their approach. He noted in his diary, "Gandhi and Jinnah are behaving like very temperamental prima donnas". Lord Wavell officially opened the summit at 11:00 am on 25 June 1945. In the beginning Azad being president of Congress spoke of its "non-communal" character. Jinnah spoke of Congress' predominately Hindu character, at that point there was a tug of war that was settled down by Wavell's intervention. On the morning of 29 June the conference was reconvened and Wavell asked parties to submit list of candidates for his new council, Azad agreed while Jinnah refused to submit a list before consulting Muslim League's working committee. Conference was adjourned till 14 July, meanwhile Wavell met with Jinnah on 8 July and tried to convince him as Jinnah was determined to nominate all Muslim member from Muslim League's platform as he considered Congress Muslim representatives as "Show Boys". Wavell gave him a letter that was placed in front of Muslim League's Working Committee on 9 July. Jinnah replied after careful consideration of Working Committee, "I regret to inform you that you have been failed to give assurance relating nomination of all Muslim members form Muslim League's platform so we are not able to submit a list." The Viceroy was equally resolved not to give at that point and wired to Amery at that night his own list of new council members. Four were to be Muslim League members (Liaquat Ali Khan, Khawaja Nazimuddin, Chaudhry Khaliquzzaman and Eassak Sait) and another Non-League Muslim Muhammad Nawaz Khan (a Punjabi landlord). The five 'Caste Hindus' had to be Jawaharlal Nehru, Vallabhbhai Patel, Rajendra Prasad, Madhav Shrihari Aney, B. N. Rau. Tara Singh was to represent Sikhs and B. R. Ambedkar to "untouchables" John Mathai was the only Christian thus bringing total to sixteen with Viceroy and Commander-in-Chief. Amery asked Wavell to consult this list with Jinnah, when Jinnah was asked about Muslim names he bitterly refused to allow any League member to be part of the government until the League's right to be the sole representative of Muslims of India was acknowledged. Wavell found this demand impossible thus he half an hour later told Gandhi about his failure, Gandhi took news calmly and said "H. M. G. sooner or later have to take Hindu or Muslim point of view as they were irreconcilable." Thus the Wavell plan that was later to be called Shimla Conference was badly failed.
In May 1945 Wavell visited London and discussed his ideas with the British Government. These London talks resulted in the formulation of a definite plan of action which was officially made public simultaneously on 14 June 1945 by L.S. Amery, the Secretary of State for India, in the House of Commons and by Wavell in a broadcast speech delivered from Delhi. The plan, commonly known as the Wavell Plan, proposed the following:
1. The Viceroy’s Executive Council would be immediately reconstituted and the number of its members would be increased.
2. In the Council there would be equal representation of high-caste Hindus and Muslims.
4. All the members of the Council, except the Viceroy and the Commander-in-Chief, would be Indians.
5. An Indian would be appointed as the member for Foreign Affairs in the Council. However, a British commissioner would be responsible for trade matters.
6. The defense of India would remain in British hands until power was ultimately transferred to Indians.
7. The Viceroy would convene a meeting of Indian politicians including the leaders of Congress and the Muslim League at which they would nominate members of the new Council.
8. If this plan were to be approved for the central government, then similar councils of local political leaders would be formed in all the provinces.
9. None of the changes suggested would in any way prejudice or prejudge the essential form of the future permanent Constitution of India.
To discuss these proposals with Indian leaders, Wavell summoned them to a conference to take place in Simla on 25 June 1945.
The Wavell Plan, in essence, proposed the complete Indianisation of the Executive Council, but instead of asking all the parties to nominate members to the Executive Council from all the communities, seats were reserved for members on the basis of religion and caste, with the caste Hindus and Muslims being represented on it on the basis of parity. Even Mahatma Gandhi resented the use of the words “caste Hindus”.
While the plan proposed immediate changes to the composition of the Executive Council it did not contain any guarantee of Indian independence, nor did it contain any mention of a future constituent assembly or any proposals for the division of power between the various parties of India.
Meanwhile, a general election had been held in the United Kingdom in July 1945 which had brought the Labor Party to power. The Labor party wanted to transfer power to the Indians as quickly as possible. The new government sent the Cabinet Mission to India and this proved to be the final nail in the coffin of the Wavell Plan.
The Partition of India of 1947 was the division of British India into two independent dominion states, the Union of India and the Dominion of Pakistan. The Union of India is today the Republic of India; the Dominion of Pakistan is today the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the People's Republic of Bangladesh. The partition involved the division of two provinces, Bengal and Punjab, based on district-wise non-Muslim or Muslim majorities. The partition also saw the division of the British Indian Army, the Royal Indian Navy, the Indian Civil Service, the railways, and the central treasury. The partition was outlined in the Indian Independence Act 1947 and resulted in the dissolution of the British Raj, or Crown rule in India. The two self-governing countries of India and Pakistan legally came into existence at midnight on 15 August 1947.
The All-India Muslim League was a political party established in 1906 in British India. Its strong advocacy for the establishment of a separate Muslim-majority nation-state, Pakistan, successfully led to the partition of India in 1947 by the British Empire.
Events in the year 1945 in India.
Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin Ahmed bin Khairuddin Al-Hussaini Azad
The Pakistan Movement or Tahrik-e-Pakistan was a political movement in the first half of the 20th century that aimed for and succeeded in the creation of the Dominion of Pakistan from the Muslim-majority areas of British India.
The Radcliffe Line was the boundary demarcation line between the Indian and Pakistani portions of the Punjab and Bengal provinces of British India. It was named after its architect, Sir Cyril Radcliffe, who, as the joint chairman of the two boundary commissions for the two provinces, received the responsibility to equitably divide 175,000 square miles (450,000 km2) of territory with 88 million people.
The three Round Table Conferences of 1930–32 were a series of peace conferences organized by the British Government and Indian political personalities to discuss constitutional reforms in India. These started in November 1930 and ended in December 1932. They were conducted as per the recommendation of Jinnah to Viceroy Lord Irwin and Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald, and by the report submitted by the Simon Commission in May 1930. Demands for Swaraj, or self-rule, in India had been growing increasingly strong. B. R. Ambedkar, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru, V. S. Srinivasa Sastri, Sir Muhammad Zafrulla Khan, K. T. Paul and Mirabehn are key participants from India. By the 1930s, many British politicians believed that India needed to move towards dominion status. However, there were significant disagreements between the Indian and the British political parties that the Conferences would not resolve. The key topic was about constitution and India which was mainly discussed in that conference. There were three Round Table Conferences from 1930 to 1932.
The Lahore Resolution, was written and prepared by Muhammad Zafarullah Khan and was presented by A. K. Fazlul Huq, the Prime Minister of Bengal, was a formal political statement adopted by the All-India Muslim League on the occasion of its three-day general session in Lahore on 22–24 March 1940. The resolution called for independent states as seen by the statement:
That geographically contiguous units are demarcated regions which should be constituted, with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority as in the North Western and Eastern Zones of (British) India should be grouped to constitute ‘independent states’ in which the constituent units should be autonomous and sovereign.
The Cripps Mission was a failed attempt in late March 1942 by the British government to secure full Indian cooperation and support for their efforts in World War II. The mission was headed by a senior minister Sir Stafford Cripps. Cripps belonged to the left-wing Labour Party, traditionally sympathetic to Indian self-rule, but was also a member of the coalition War Cabinet led by the Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who had long been the leader of the movement to block Indian independence.
Direct Action Day, also known as the 1946 Calcutta Killings, was a day of widespread communal rioting between Muslims and Hindus in the city of Calcutta in the Bengal province of British India. The day also marked the start of what is known as The Week of the Long Knives.
Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Malik Khizar Hayat TiwanaKCSI, OBE was a Punjabi statesman, army officer, and landowner who served as the Unionist Premier of the Punjab in colonial India between 1942 and 1947.
Khan Bahadur Captain Sir Sikandar Hayat Khan, KBE, MBE (Mil.), also written Sikandar Hyat-Khan or Sikandar Hyat Khan, was a statesman from the Punjab. He held the office of Prime Minister of the Punjab among other positions.
The Cabinet Mission came to India aimed to discuss the transfer of powers from the British government to the Indian leadership, with the aim of preserving India's unity and granting its independence. Formulated at the initiative of Clement Attlee, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the mission had Lord Pethick-Lawrence, the Secretary of State for India, Sir Stafford Cripps, President of the Board of Trade, and A. V. Alexander, the First Lord of the Admiralty. Lord Wavell, the Viceroy of India, did not participate in every step but was present and it was divided into three groups A,B,C clusters.
The "Day of Deliverance" was a celebration day marked by the All-India Muslim League and others on 22 December 1939 during the Indian independence movement. It was led by Muslim League president Muhammad Ali Jinnah, and intended to rejoice the resignation of all members of the rival Congress party from provincial and central offices in protest over their not having been consulted over the decision to enter World War II alongside Britain.
The English East India Company, was an English and later British joint-stock company. It was later formed to trade in the Indian Ocean region, initially with Mughal India and the East Indies, and later with Qing China. The company ended up seizing control of large parts of the Indian subcontinent, colonised parts of Southeast Asia, and colonised Hong Kong after a war with Qing China on the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947. The system of governance was instituted in 1858 when the rule of the East India Company was transferred to the Crown in the person of Queen Victoria. It lasted until 1947, when the British provinces of India were partitioned into two sovereign dominion states: the Dominion of India and the Dominion of Pakistan, leaving the princely states to choose between them. Most of the princely states decided to part with either Dominion of India or Dominion of Pakistan, except the states of Jammu and Kashmir. It is only at the very last moment that Jammu and Kashmir agreed to sign the "Instrument of Accession
The Viceroy's Executive Council was the cabinet of the government of British India headed by the Viceroy of India. It is also known as the Council of the Governor-General of India. It was transformed from an advisory council into a cabinet consisting of five members heading revenue, military, law, finance and home by the Indian Councils Act 1861 giving recognition to the portfolio system introduced by Lord Canning in 1859. In 1874, a sixth member was added to be in charge of public works.
Sir Mian Fazl-i-Husain, KCSI was an influential politician during the British Raj and a founding member of the Unionist Party of the Punjab.
C. Rajagopalachari's formula was a proposal formulated by Chakravarti Rajagopalachari to solve the political deadlock between the All India Muslim League and the Indian National Congress on the independence of British India. The League's position was that the Muslims and Hindus of British India were of two separate nations and hence the Muslims had the right to their own nation. The Congress, which included both Hindu and Muslim members, was opposed to the idea of partitioning India. With the advent of the Second World War the British administration required both parties to agree so that Indian help could be sought for the war effort.
The August Offer was a offer made by Viceroy Linlithgow in 1940 promising the expansion of the Executive Council of the Viceroy of India to include more Indians, the establishment of an advisory war council, giving full weight to minority opinion, and the recognition of Indians' right to frame their own constitution. In return, it was hoped that all parties and communities in India would cooperate in Britain's efforts in World War II. However this proposal was rejected by the Congress as the minorities, especially the Muslim League, were assured that no constitutional scheme was acceptable to the government without their agreement, i.e. providing a veto power to the Muslim League. The Muslim League accepted the offer as it gave a clear assurance that a separate Pakistan would be established.
Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a barrister, politician and the founder of Pakistan. Jinnah served as the leader of the All-India Muslim League from 1913 until Pakistan's creation on 14 August 1947, and then as Pakistan's first Governor-General until his death. He is revered in Pakistan as Quaid-i-Azam and Baba-i-Qaum,. His birthday is a national holiday in Pakistan.
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